meme Log

July 27, 2014

In a World (8.0)

Filed under: Movies — Lynn Fikstad @ 14:37

I like clever, original, independent movies, especially comedies, and this one had all 4. There are better independent comedies, but you can’t go wrong with this one.

Lake Bell directed, starred, and wrote the movie; what a talent! She was great playing the diffident, likable Carol, trying to make it in the cutthroat world of Hollywood voice overs. The culture of this part of Hollywood was interesting and made up for the slight lack great comedic dialogue. Her arrogant father was unlikable and a little unbelievable, but I guess it is possible that Hollywood stars can be unbelievably narcissistic.


July 26, 2014

Truly, Madly, Deeply (8.0)

Filed under: Movies — Lynn Fikstad @ 10:20

This is a movie about grieving and the loss of a spouse. Unfortunately there are ghosts, not imaginary ghosts but most likely the producers and director wanted to imply real ghosts. More appeal to the general audience? It’s been compared to Ghost, but Ghost was a funny, entertaining movie; this one had less comedy and a more raw emotion, sometimes maudlin and hokey, but often spot on. I saw it as a serious, thoughtful movie, but that’s what I was looking for. Given that, it would have been a better movie if it was clear that the ghosts were in Nina’s mind; that she actually lost her touch with reality because of the grief she was going through. Maybe the producers and directors wanted it both ways, but the scene of ghosts removing the carpet seemed real in my mind. Jamie wouldn’t have done that. She wasn’t that delusional.

The movie isn’t exceptional, but one of the final scenes is (it’s about 1 ½ hours into the movie). It is now one of my top 10 favorite movie scenes of all time. Without that the movie would many not be worth watching for someone who has not gone through the grief losing one’s spouse. This scene, and the fact that I know about grief, was almost done perfectly.

The exceptional scene begins with Nina and Jamie (her dead husband) fighting about Jamie’s ghost friends who had just removed the carpet. Nina begins to see how their life together really was. It wasn’t ideal; there were conflicts and Nina learned to compromise and deal with them over the years because she loved Jamie. This is a real truth about good relationships. Someone else already captured it here on YouTube.

I think because she knew this, she asks Jamie to tell her about the first night they spent together, to describe one of the ideal memories they shared. He does, and it is touching.

She then tells Jamie some of the changes she has made, changes she is proud of because they make her feel independent and competent. She does things she never did before because she knew Jamie would disapprove. After a loss there are bound to be changes that make life different, both good and bad, but mostly bad if it was a fulfilling relationship. You are doing things you want to do and even things you now have to do. There is no need to compromise anymore or take your partners preferences into account. There is no more dependence on the things your partner took care of. The scene captures Nina’s conflicting emotions, her feelings about her new self and her deep desire for Jamie to stay. Her love is still strong and the loss is unbearable. It captures how her new life means little when compared to the deep loss of Jamie. Right after she enthusiastically talks about all the good things she has been able to do on her own she tells Jamie with even more passion, “I so much long for you…I long for you…”. It was well done because it expressed the complex emotions of grief and loss and the process of creating a new normal.

After she expresses her deep love and longing for him, Jamie asks her to translate a Spanish poem for him (shortened and I think a better version than the original).

Here is the poem

…forgive me.
If you are not living,
if you, beloved, my love,
if you
have died,
all the leaves will fall on my breast,
it will rain on my soul all night all day,
my feet will want to walk to where you are sleeping,
I shall go on living

Jamie then says, “Do you want me to go”.
Nina says, “No! never, never, never…never”

The movie wraps up soon after this scene with Nina finally accepting the loss and the need to go on living.

This is a great movie for those who have grieved the loss of a love and a good movie for anyone else.

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